Monday May 20, 2024

Preparing for 2023

By Dr Imran Batada
January 03, 2023

Whether you are a professional or a student, gaining technical skills can boost your career significantly. There are exciting opportunities for tech professionals based on the latest trends. Acquiring new skills can help you attain job satisfaction, security and more earnings.

What thrived well three years ago may already be outdated by now. In 2023, people ought to learn the right kind of skills that will make them more well-informed about the latest technologies.

First, data storytelling and data communication is a key skill with a lot of potential. Organizations will have to work with data through collection, processing, preparation, visualization, analysis, interpretation and storytelling. Data storytelling is an interesting skill especially if you have a background in data science or have an interest in it. It is estimated that by 2025, around 70 per cent of jobs will involve directly working with data. Data storytellers will use data visualization tools to convey the data interestingly.

Second, cybersecurity is a key technical skill that can benefit many individuals. Cyber attacks and data breaches pose a huge threat to many businesses, especially with remote working. Company data can also be compromised which can lead to huge financial losses. Similarly, customer data breaches can make people lose trust in the specific company. Most companies are actively looking for cybersecurity experts to join their teams for more security. These experts will be in high demand in 2023 and afterwards, with an increase in technological advancement. Cybersecurity experts must know how to manage sensitive data, cloud migrations, and protect IT infrastructure.

Third, machine learning and artificial intelligence have significantly evolved with new technologies being built on them. The recent invention of ChatGPT through AI has sparked mixed reactions. Individuals can ask the bot any question and get a relevant answer as long as the question is morally acceptable. Machine learning is also being used widely to build great technologies. Therefore, if people want to dive into it, they can consider gaining domain knowledge, programming languages, and predictive and data analysis. Updating AI and ML skills can be game changers in 2023.

Fourth, user experience (UX) design skills are crucial in 2023. Digital transformation has resulted in high demand for UX designers who can make the technology user-friendly. This includes websites and apps. UX designers make it easier for people to use certain applications. Just like front-end developers, they make sure that the front (visible) side of mobile and web applications is easy to operate. For example, if people are facing a loss in their online store sales, they can consult a UX designer to make their websites much easier to use. If the add-to-cart button is hard to find, it will become hard for customers to make purchases. While acquiring this skill people need to do enough market and audience research, imagine different user personas, design wireframes, and carry out testing. People also need to have some knowledge of programming languages to play around with the code.

Fifth, cloud computing skills are really important to gain. According to Gartner’s forecast, global cloud spending will reach $590 billion in 2023. Most companies consider cloud migration to ensure that all their data is well backed up. Remote working has also increased the need for cloud computing experts. If interested in cloud computing, people will need to gain knowledge of SQL, Linux, database management, AI, ML, and cloud technologies. Therefore, if people are thinking of improving their skills, cloud computing should be something on their mind, based on their interests.

Sixth, the demand for digital marketing skills is growing rapidly. The rise of online stores, digital products, print-on-demand, drop-shipping, and other digital modes has created a thriving market for digital marketers. This skill will help people capture the attention of customers and potential customers to convince them why product A is better than product B. Other marketing modes like social media advertising, influencer campaigns, search engine optimization and email marketing are equally great and can help any firms. A digital marketer needs to have enough skills to ensure they promote products in the right way. Marketing plays a huge role in the success of companies and should be given sufficient attention. For those interested in the marketing field, digital marketing is the way to go.

Seventh, learning more about DevOps is equally important. This field of study helps people learn more about practices and tools that integrate software development and operations teams to shorten the development cycle. Therefore, it requires gaining knowledge of Python, PHP, PERL, and Java. Learning DevOp requires regular integration, testing, and delivery. In as much as DevOps is technical, it requires soft skills like communication and collaboration. Therefore, it is important to be sure of the kind of skills you would want to learn before deciding to be a DevOps professional.

Eighth, product management skills are also important to learn. Product managers have a vital role in launching and managing successful tech products and workforce and shows. Product managers also require to have some technical background and great soft skills such as negotiation, persuasion, empathy and good leadership skills. It is crucial to have a product manager who will play a big role in ensuring that the launched products reach the target customers or market on time.

Ninth, software development skills are important to learn. Such professionals should be well-versed in JavaScript, Python, Go, Java, Flutter, PHP, Swift, R, Ruby, C, and C++. Software developers help reduce repetitive tasks by providing programmes that users or staff can use to perform certain tasks in a company.

Tenth, blockchain knowledge is crucial. The famous bitcoin is a product of blockchain technology. Blockchain is a data set characterized as a decentralized public record. The effects of blockchain in finance are set to be critical. It is estimated that 10 per cent of the global GDP will be put away by blockchain by 2027. This shows the kind of potential this new technology has; it can also be used in recruiting, by taking a look at qualifications and work history. Blockchain records information in a manner that makes it hard for anyone to hack the system or even alter it. Additionally, blockchain can boost security, efficiency, traceability, costs and speed.

All these skills are crucial in 2023. People should put enough effort to ensure they meet the right requirements to get hired by different companies. Whether you are a tech professional or interested in joining the field, these skills can be a game changer for you.

The writer is CTO & director, Centre of Information Technology at IoBM. He tweets @imranbatada and can be reached at: